Windows Server Backup Fails


Windows Server Backup fails on Windows 2012 R2 Hyper-v server.  System fails to create shadow copy.

Specific Windows Server Backup Errors:

-Backup not started.
-The backup operation of the volume did not start.
-Location is Invalid

Event Log Errors:

-The backup operation attempted at xxxx has failed to start, error code '0x8078000C' ('The specified backup storage location is invalid.').

-The backup operation that started at xxxx  has failed because the Volume Shadow Copy Service operation to create a shadow copy of the volumes being backed up failed with following error code '0x80780119'.


The EFI-based server uses a GUID partition table (GPT) file system.  A GPT drive includes the following partitions:

  • EFI System Partition:
    -The server boots to the EFI partition.
    -The EFI partition cannot store user data.
    -The typical size for a 512-byte sector drive is 100MB.
  • Microsoft Reserved Partition (MSR):
    -Windows uses the MSR (i.e., recovery partition) partition to store security and recovery tools (e.g., Windows Recovery (RE).
    -The MSR cannot store user data.
    -The typical size for a the MSR partition is 300MB.  
Solution:  System partitions must have enough free space to create shadow copies of the partition -including both the EFI and MSR volumes:

  • Partitions smaller than 500 MB require at least 50 MB of free space.
  • Partitions larger than 500 MB require at least 320 MB of free space.
  • Partitions larger than 1 GB require at least 1 GB of free space.
Therefore, Windows backups fail when there is not enough free space on either the EFI or MSR volumes.

Recovery Steps:

  1. Free-up space by shrinking one of the primary partitions.
  2. Use unallocated disk space to create a new volume for VSS snapshots. For example:

    Volume Name:  VSS Backup
    Format:  NTFS
    Size:  512MB
    Drive Letter:  None
  3. Identify volume GUIDs:

    d:\vssadmin.exe list volumes
  4. Add additional VSS storage to the MSR.  For example:

        vssadmin.exe add shadowstorage /for=\\?\Volume{247c09ad-xxx-xxx-xxx-xxxxxxxx}\ /On=\\?\Volume{815230ad-xxx-xxx-xxx-xxxxxxx}\ /MaxSize=Unbounded 

    Note: VSSAdmin may need run from non-system volume (e.g., D:\).
  5. Use Diskshadow for related VSS errors (optional):
    DISKSHADOW>delete shadows all        

It's also worth mentioning that most vssadmin functions can be completed with the Windows GUI:

C: → Properties → Shadow Copies → Advanced

That's it!



Post a Comment

My Instagram